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New Weight Management Service in Leeds

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Adults with severe and complex obesity in Leeds will get support to manage their weight through a new service beginning in April.

A partnership between Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust (LCH), Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTHT), Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LYPFT) has been awarded a 3 year contract by NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), to deliver Tier 3 Specialist Weight Management Services across Leeds.

The new partnership will offer weight management programmes for 12-18 months that will support adults with severe and complex obesity to lose weight and improve their health. The team will provide a range of medical support, specialist diets, talking therapies and physical activity.

The UK is facing an obesity epidemic: more than 1 in 4 adults are obese, and the prevalence is increasing. In Leeds 62% of people aged 16+ are overweight.*

Previously, this specialist service was only delivered in a hospital setting - the new NHS partnership will see Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust offering additional support to people in a community setting. 

Emma Oates, Service Manager at Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “We will deliver a range of accessible, community-based, weight management support to help people make changes that will help them lose weight and understand the underlying issues that can cause weight gain.

Some people will already be accessing a range of community services such as Diabetic Services, Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) and Musculoskeletal Services. We will make sure care is more joined up for people accessing these services.”

The team includes staff from all three NHS Trusts comprising physicians, dietitians, psychiatrists, psychologists, psychotherapists and weight management advisers with specialist knowledge, skills and experience in helping people manage their weight.  

Dr Max Henderson, Consultant Liaison Psychiatrist at Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said:  “We know that psychological issues can sometimes be a real barrier to people making the most of specialist weight management services. This is why it’s so vital that there is a mental health element to this new service. It means that patients will be able to access high quality psychiatric care throughout their weight management journey.”

Dr Julian Barth, Obesity Physician at Leeds Teaching Hospitals, said: “Leeds has been a forerunner delivering medical obesity services since the early 1970s. We are excited that the valuable support that our service provides to people with severe and complex obesity has been recognised. We have worked with LYPFT for a number of years and are looking forward to working in partnership with LCH. This will ensure that the services are more widely available for the people of Leeds.”

Dr Jamie O’Shea, Clinical Lead for Planned Care and Cancer Care at NHS Leeds CCG, said: “We’re looking forward to this partnership work with the three trusts. It will give people an opportunity to be seen in the community rather than having to travel to a hospital setting, as we’re keen on providing care closer to home for local residents.”

* Director of Public Health Annual Report 2016, Improving the Health Status for Leeds beyond 2016.

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